President Message July 2019

PRESIDENT MESSAGE – JULY 2019

The month of July is another busy month for MBAM as we are organising the first Penang International Construction Conference 2019 in Georgetown, Penang. The Conference is jointly organised by MBAM and Penang Master Builders & Building Materials Dealers Association (PMBBMDA). It is supported by Construction Industry Development Board Malaysia (CIDB), Social Security Organisation Malaysia (SOCSO) and Penang State Government Office; and endorsed by Department of Occupational Safety and Health Malaysia (DOSH) and National Council for Occupational Safety and Health (NCOSH). I am also very delighted that the Guest of Honour will be the Chief Minister of Penang, YAB Tuan Chow Kon Yeow.

Now, let’s take a look at some of the key highlights for the month of June:-

 

SEA Connect 2019 – The Creative Conference 2019

The Conference above was held on 13 June 2019 in conjunction with ACA Championship Malaysia 2019 Grand Finale at Grand Nexus, Connnexion Conference & Event Center, Bangsar South City. The conference was aimed and committed to bring the best of the best talent in the creative industry to share their journey and the secret behind their success in Malaysia. Opening and keynote speech was conveyed by Acestar Sdn Bhd Group CEO, Natalie Sit.

The conference was attended by MBAM Senior Assistant Manager, Muhammad Fadzley Bin Salim.

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Natalie delivering the keynote speech

MBAM Dialogue with Building Materials Distributors Association (BMDAM) and the National Ready Mixed Concrete Association of Malaysia (NRMCA) on 17 June 2019

The above dialogue was held with the objective to seek clarification on the sudden price increase of ready mixed concrete. It was made clear at the beginning of the dialogue in order not to infringe and in compliance with MyCC’s requirements there would be No discussion on Pricing Policy.

BMDAM’s Deputy President, Lim Chun Heng informed that their members were still getting supply of bag cement at current prices and there was no shortage of supplies, but the rebates were pulled back on case to case basis.

Michael Low, NRMCA’s Immediate Past President reiterated the explanation of BMDAM and informed that their members had received notice on the pull back of rebates on bulk cement. The effect of this had caused the price of ready mixed concrete to increase by approximately 40 per cent. The dilemma faced by their members was that they were contractually bonded to supply at the old price and any increase of selling price would subject to litigation. With the pull back of the rebates, this caused them to lose money.

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During the Dialogue session with BMDAM and NRMCA

The dialogue touched on the various press statements made by stake holders in the industry on the adverse effect of the price increase of cement on the construction industries, housing development, and economy of the country. In addition the buy over of Lafarge by YTL Cement which became the dominant manufacturer having a market share of 65 percent was deliberated and concluded that there was no evidence link to the price increase.

It was noted that the Ministry of Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs (MoDT&CA) had taken a stand to reaffirm the price of cement was under the price control act and required approval from the Ministry for any price changes.

All the parties present deliberated and agreed that the cement manufacturers were facing difficult times and were not profitable due to the poor demand of cement as a result of scarcity of construction projects. It was also noted that the pull back of rebates was a commercial decision on a case to case basis and did not constitute a price increase as the list price of bag cement and bulk cement remain unchanged.

In conclusion, the decision was to let the MoDT&CA to act on the issue and it was also mooted to request our Government to reintroduce the defunct fluctuation clause in construction contract. Meanwhile MBAM was tasked to arrange a meeting with the cement manufacturers to allow the contractors to have a buffer period to adjust their costing, if any.

 

MBAM COCD Programme Kuala Lumpur 11th Intake: Module 9 and 10

The training on modules 9 and 10 of the COCD programme held on 18 June 2019 at MBAM Training Centre was attended by a total of 16 participants. These modules focused on construction resource scheduling, inventory and wastage control as well as Project “S” Curve and baseline tracking for construction project monitoring and control.

In module 9, participants learnt about time vs resource constraint project planning and scheduling, resource allocation and utilisation in project execution for construction trade foremen/supervisors, resource inventory and store control for construction trade foremen/supervisors, and material handling and wastage control for construction trade foremen/supervisors.

In module 10, participants were taught about elements of effective construction project monitoring and control, project scheduling requirement for contract compliance and executive, Project “S” Curve and Earned Value Management (EVM) in project time and cost monitoring and control, as well as the changes, disruption and time control in project execution.

 

C & P Programme 3/2019: Extension of Time

The above programme was successfully organised on 19 June 2019. MBAM Council Member and Deputy Chairman of Contracts and Practices Committee, Ir Anthony Teoh delivered the welcome speech.

The programme conducted by Sr Ong Hock Tek at MBAM Training Centre attracted 37 participants. The focus of the programme was on the topic of “Extension of Time (EOT). Construction contracts generally allow the construction period to be extended where there is a delay that is not the contractor’s fault. This is described as an extension of time or EOT. When it becomes reasonably apparent that there is, or that there is likely to be, a delay that could merit an extension of time, the contractor gives written notice to the contract administrator identifying the relevant event that has caused the delay. If the contract administrator accepts that the delay was caused by a relevant event, then they may grant an extension of time and the completion date is adjusted. Relevant events may include variations, failure to provide critical information, delay on the part of a nominated subcontractor, force majeure and many other factors.

It is very important when deducting liquidated damages to ensure that the correct contractual procedures are adhered to. Overall, it was an interesting programme with strong participation by the attendees for the topic presented.

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Session 3 training in progress

Diplomatic Reception in Celebration of the 121st National Day of the Republic of the Philippines

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I attended the Diplomatic Reception in celebration of the 121st National Day of the Republic of the Philippines on 20 June 2019 at JW Marriott Hotel, Kuala Lumpur. The Philippines became independent on 12 June 1898 after 333 years of colonial rule.

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The event saw the attendance of a number of diplomats from embassies and high commissions in Kuala Lumpur.

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Here I am with Raul Sanzhez from Embassy of Colombia

CIDB Engagement Session with Stakeholders on Internationalisation

The CIDB Engagement Session with Stakeholders on Internationalisation was held on 26 June 2019 at Putra World Trade Centre and attended by Deputy Chairman II of IA Committee, Chung Soo Kiong; Alternate Council Member, Shafidz Azhar and members; including MBAM Executive Director, Loh Mei Ling.

The session was led by CIDB International Vision General Manager, Sr Mohd Zaid Zakaria with the briefing on Financing Initiative in venturing abroad followed and the presentation on Construction Industry Outlook and Internationalisation Strategy.

The group discussion was conducted at the end of the session to get the views from the industry in identifying potential market abroad, issues and how CIDB can facilitate the contractors in venturing overseas project.

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Group Photo with the meeting attendees

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MBAM Executive Director, Loh Mei Ling (first from left) with other invitees

2019 NRMCA Concrete Convention: Challenges and Opportunities in a New Malaysia

On 27 June 2019, MBAM Affiliate Member, the National Ready-Mixed Concrete Association of Malaysia (NRMCA) organised its 2019 NRMCA Concrete Convention entitled “Challenges and Opportunities in a New Malaysia” at Tropicana Golf & Country Resort.

Over the years, the NRMCA Concrete Convention had served as a platform for the industry experts to showcase the latest technologies, equipment and best practices for the advancement of the concrete industry in Malaysia. The event is highly regarded among NRMCA members and non-members alike served as a great platform and opportunity for concrete industry communities which include concrete producers, regulators, engineers, equipment, admixture and aggregate suppliers and its trade partners to get together and network with one another.

It covered topics such as new materials to produce modern concrete, production highly durable concrete and use of Apps to control deliveries as well as the latest safety and the environmental best practices.

 

ACCCIM Meeting on the Proposed Amendments to Employment Act 1955, Industrial Relations Act 1967 & Trade Unions Act 1959

The meeting was held on 28 June 2019 at The Associated Chinese Chambers of Commerce and Industry of Malaysia (ACCCIM) attended by MBAM Manager, Mohd Farhan Mohammad Din.

The meeting discussed on the proposed amendments to the Employment Act 1955, Industrial Relations Act 1967 and Trade Unions Act 1959 which covers Working Hours, Maternity & Paternity Leave, Flexibility Woking Hours, Forced Labour, Ordinary Rate of Pay (ORP), Freedom of Association, and Recognition of Representation of the Trade Unions etc.

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Meeting in Progress

FOO CHEK LEE JMW

MBAM President